Local healthcare provider recognized for work to increase vaccination rates in Southwest Georgia

AAPHC’s Dr. James Hotz and Dr. Frances Ferguson accept the ACP 2019 Advance Quality Improvement Award for increasing critical vaccination rates in Southwest Georgia.

ALBANY, Ga. – The American College of Physicians recently awarded Albany Area Primary Health Care the Advance Quality Improvement Award for 2019.  This award highlights the work of AAPHC physicians, providers and team members within the organization to increase overall vaccinations for Southwest Georgia patients.

“AAPHC is committed to ensuring that both our pediatric and adult patients receive the critical immunizations and vaccinations needed to protect their health now and well into the future,” said AAPHC spokeswoman Brandy Church.

Over the past year, the AAPHC team focused on vaccinations for two diseases – pneumonia and the Human papilloma virus.

Patients who are 65 and older qualify for the pneumonia vaccine, which protects patients against 23 types of pneumococcal bacteria. When a patient develops pneumonia, the tiny air sacs in the lungs become inflamed and can fill with fluid, which can severely sicken the patient and cause breathing issues. Pneumonia can range from a mild to serious or life-threatening infection and can sometimes lead to death.

AAPHC also focused on improving the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccination rates for patients between 11 and 26 years old. The HPV vaccine prevents HPV types 16 and 18 — the two types that cause 80% of cervical cancer cases.

“AAPHC is consistently developing new programs that improve the quality of care for our patients,” Church said. “By ensuring patients receive these timely vaccinations, our providers ensure that our patients have a lower chance of getting certain diseases and suffering from their complications.

“We are proud of this recognition from the American College of Physicians, which highlights the quality improvement work happening at Albany Area Primary Health Care,” Church said. “Everything we do is centered on improving the health of our patients and their families.”

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